The global ecommerce opportunity is huge and it only looks set to grow further over the next decade. In fact, Statista projects that $4.6 trillion will be spent online by 2020.
Tapping into this opportunity requires much more than just content translation, however. A sophisticated blend of technology, people, and process is needed if brands truly want to engage with their audience on a global scale.
Creating a genuine and lasting connection with consumers is vital in any market, with 86% of customers stating that they would pay more for a product or service if they received better customer experience.
Brands are aware of this, but delivering on the promise of improved customer experience can be a complex undertaking. That complexity is multiplied when we incorporate the cultural, linguistic, and technological nuances that make every international market unique.
The picture is clear: getting global marketing right means investing in technology, people, and processes.
Below, we have rounded up some tips to help any brand take their offering to new international audiences.
Content created in collaboration with Building Blocks
The key to any successful international marketing strategy is an understanding of consumers at the local level. From this insight, everything from content creation to audience targeting can be shaped with precision.
True localization begins with the elementary principle that using machine translations simply won’t cut it. It is imperative to engage native speakers, not only to translate with accuracy but also to adapt the content if needed.
Brands should use a flexible design within their CMS to build on this, as this will allow local market managers to maintain a consistent tone of voice while also injecting their local insights to ensure that the content resonates. This applies equally to the user experience, which may need to be tailored to suit local market preferences. For example, a site navigation that looks great in English may lose its aesthetic appeal when translated into German, due to the lengthier nature of nouns in the latter language.
As your strategy becomes more advanced, you will find it possible to automate and personalize global marketing communications by using an enterprise-level content management system. Partnering with the right technology can allow you to segment and communicate with granular audience lists in any international market.
Testing is a fundamental aspect of international digital marketing, too. Econsultancy reports that successful companies conduct an average of 6.45 A/B and multivariate tests per month. Global marketing can be unpredictable; a structured approach to testing can eliminate the element of chance.
Assess your current level of localization against each of these criteria to see how prepared your business is to take the next step. Learning to localize content, working with a flexible CMS, and testing rigorously are three great ways to get started.
To develop a strategy, it is essential to have a clear structure in place from the outset. This allows a framework against which to analyze current performance, as well as create your long-term marketing objectives.
The stakeholders across your business will have invaluable opinions on the company’s current approach, so you should ask them to contribute. Creating a questionnaire for all relevant parties to complete will provide an overview of where the business stands today. This can be coupled with workshops to collaborate on new solutions, all of which will lead naturally to a 12-month roadmap.
There are four areas for assessment that any brand should use the pillars for this exercise:
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